Welcome to another Small Business Update, today with Ruth Badley from Ruth Badley PR. We first met Ruth in October 2012 and updated her story in November 2013, at which point this was her plan: “I hope to consolidate and keep the clients I have. I don’t have much more capacity right now and it was never my plan to grow so big I needed to take on staff to cope. I have no wish to build an empire – doing a good job for the clients I have is enough for me.” That all sounded eminently sensible, and she was in the kind of position that I’m in, running a stable and mature business and wanting to continue doing a good job and carrying on the same path. So, did that happen? Hmm … let’s see …
Hello again, Ruth! So, are you where you thought you’d be when you looked forward a year ago?
I have an unusual response to that question right now. If you had asked me that two months ago I would have said yes, pretty much where I predicted I would be. I have taken on a couple of new clients, work with existing clients has grown and the picture seems quite settled but then…
What has changed and what has stayed the same?
The opportunity to relocate to Dubai for two years! So all change but, thanks to technology, I will be able to continue my business from the UAE. I have been very encouraged by the response from clients, who have all indicated they will be happy to see how a remote PR service works out for them. I am hoping my client base will indeed stay the same. I am currently balancing my work with preparations for departure in early 2015. I do a good deal of my work for my husband’s employer and this opportunity has come about through the company’s international reach.
What have you learned? What do you wish you’d known a year ago?
I am learning to be flexible – at very short notice and under pressure of time. I wish I’d had an inkling a year ago that relocation was on the cards. The organisation required is enormous so if like me you have a home office full of clutter, do yourself a favour and get rid now! Even if you don’t plan on moving, the process is very cleansing!
Any more hints and tips for people?
I have fought shy of having a website for several years but prompted by the move, my son has created one for me. I am used to advising other people on what their website says about them and now I have the chance to be more creative on my own behalf. www.ruthbadley.com is currently under construction and this exercise alone is helping me to really focus on how I want to communicate my services and the personality of my business, in a way I have never thought about before.
And … where do you see yourself and your business in a(nother) year’s time?
Definitely in a warmer place! I hope to continue the work I am currently doing whilst also taking time to immerse myself in a totally different way of life, in a location which offers so many new and exciting possibilities. I don’t think I would be wise to predict where my business will be in a year’s time but I am looking forward to finding out.
Wow – what a change, coming out of nowhere. I don’t know if it was the effect of Ruth’s mention of getting rid of clutter, but I did spend a chunk of this morning tidying my desk, although I’m not anticipating a call to Dubai myself (but who knows!). I really hope it goes well for Ruth. I know it’s perfectly possible to work remotely for my clients, who are all over the world and in many different time zones, so I’m sure it will work out for Ruth. Good luck, Ruth, and we look forward to hearing how you’re doing this time next year!
If you’ve enjoyed this interview, please see more small business chat, the index to all the interviewees, and information on how you can have your business featured (I have a full roster of interviewees now so am only taking on a very few new ones). If you’re considering setting up a new business or have recently done so, why not take a look at my books, all available now, in print and e-book formats, from a variety of sources.